Asstistant Secretary of Energy Andy Karsner Announces Resignation

  • Published on July 31st, 2008

andy karsnerIn what comes as a surprising move, Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Andy Karsner announced his resignation from the Department of Energy on Wednesday. Karsner’s resignation came on the same day as news that Senate Republicans blocked an attempt to extend funding for renewable energy tax credits for the fourth time this summer. It is still unclear if there is any relationship between the two events.

While Karsner has not given any reason for the resignation, the underlying point is that he resigned from a one-of -a-kind job at a time when there is major political discord about how the U.S. should be moving forward with its energy policy. Perhaps Mr. Karsner wanted to get off the U.S.S. Bush before it took him down with it?

In a statement released by the DOE, Karsner’s language was guarded and infused with the tone of possibility and potential, rather than one of accomplishment and success. Karsner said that he has full faith that the Nation has the “capacity” to lead the world to innovate, invest, and deploy efficient, clean, green, renewable, and secure energy. Karsner went on:

“With meaningful policy and leadership in place, the United States is now on track to be a global leader in clean energy technology development, deployment, and diffusion, transforming global challenges into economic opportunity.  But it will take the sustained multigenerational collaborative efforts and leadership of policy makers, our entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers, and commercial developers…” [emphasis added]

Karsner’s resignation will be effective August 31, 2008.

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Photo: whitehouse.gov





About the Author

is the founder of ecopolitology and the executive editor at LiveOAK Media, a media network about the politics of energy and the environment, green business, cleantech, and green living. When not reading, writing, thinking or talking about environmental politics with anyone who will listen, Tim spends his time skiing in Colorado's high country, hiking with his dog, and getting dirty in his vegetable garden.
  • Remember listening to him speak at the AWEA conference, Tim? He was livid about the slow progress and politics being played with smart energy policy like the PTC. It wouldn't surprise me if he resigned out of frustration.

  • Mark

    Mr. Karsner is one of the most knowledgeable people around on the intersection of energy and policy. For those who know, kind of the Alan Greenspan of alternative energy. The reason he's so good is he understands business and the market. I only hope the next Admin's person is this intelligent and not some over the board hippie straight out of the European or Obama leftist playbook. Because we'll have lost a serious opportunity for change and replaced it with the same old narrow minded business versus the environment thinking.

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  • John Z.

    Why is this surprising? Karsner is/was a political appointee. They are all resigning their posts.

    "Perhaps Mr. Karsner wanted to get off the U.S.S. Bush before it took him down with it."

    Or perhaps he just wanted to line up a new job before January 20.

  • It really is ridiculous how narrow and short term much of the world is when it comes to energy decisions. We really can't seem to move out of our own way – and soon we are going to pay big time…

  • Steve

    Folks, both oil and renewables get TONS of subsidies…more than they should have, frankly. Let's get rid of ALL the subsidies and let the market work it out, okay? That's the only method proven to work.

  • It really is ridiculous how narrow and short term much of the world is when it comes to energy decisions. We really can't seem to move out of our own way – and soon we are going to pay big time…

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  • I think part of the problem is that politically, there will not be any real improvements in the next few years regarding the enviornment. There won't be any new technology, nor will their be anything sort term for him to claim as an enviornmental victory.

    Unfortunately everyone is so concerned about the short term, he may have decided to quit before he was told to leave.

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  • seriously, can someone explain to me why oil companies are entitled to subsidies and no new alternatives are? free market free market free market waaaaahhhh